Track Race: New VW Polo GTI vs Ford Fiesta ST

StoneBridge & K-Syran - Starry Night

Well this is exciting. The brand new Volkswagen Polo GTI against the semi-legendary current model Ford Fiesta ST.

It’s exciting because VW has really upped their game in this segment. The latest GTI looks fantastic, and as Ashley Oldfield assured me, the suspension setup is very unlike a VW. This is a good thing. VW has also shoved in a 1.8 litre turbo motor with outputs of 141kW and 250Nm.

But, list price is R326 400, with our test unit coming in at around R340 000. It feels very premium inside however, the new alcantara and leather seats are just the business and of course it has two more doors than the Fiesta ST.

With a list price of R275 900, the ST is significantly cheaper, but is only available as a three-door hatch (other markets have a five-door, boo). The 1.6 litre turbo motor in the ST offers 134kW and 240Nm, with an overboost function.

The Fiesta is 90kg lighter than the Polo, weighing in at 1100kg (kerb weight) which should help it around Killarney.
Making it even more interesting, the Polo we used was fitted with DSG, while the Fiesta was manual. This was going to be a great test of car and driver skill.

With the two cars lined up, we told our very own Ashley Oldfield to climb into his gear and the result is this video. One standing start hot lap of the Killarney Racetrack in Cape Town, by one driver, in perfect conditions, minutes after each other. It doesn’t get closer.

Interested in a new Polo GTI?

Interested in a new Fiesta ST?

For an ultra detailed side by side comparison, visit our Compare page:

Huge thanks to Killarney and the team for helping make this possible. Check out their calendar of events here:


Written, Directed & Presented by
Ciro De Siena

Professionally driven by
Ashley Oldfield

Warrick Le Sueur

Motion Graphics

Jean Brunning

Tom Purcell

Assisted by
Pholosi Khumalo
Rudi Gremels

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